ORTONVILLE - Anglers have through the day Monday, Oct. 29, to comment on a proposal to allow continuous fishing for walleye, northern pike and bass on South Dakota-Minnesota border waters.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is taking comments as part of an expedited rulemaking process. It would allow for the changes to be effective in March 2019.
The proposal includes the border waters of Big Stone, Traverse, Hendricks and Mud Lakes; and the Bois de Sioux and Mustinka rivers.
South Dakota is currently moving forward with making the change.
Fisheries staff in the two states believe that a continuous season will not adversely impact the fish populations, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
Fisheries staff with the DNR in Ortonville have checked around with bait shops and resort owners in the area to get their thoughts on the proposal. The responses have been fairly positive, according to Kyle Anderson, assistant fisheries supervisor with the DNR in Ortonville.
The walleye and northern pike seasons on the South Dakota-Minnesota border waters traditionally open in April, weeks ahead of the fishing opener on inland waters in Minnesota. The early opener on the border waters usually attracts many anglers. By extending the season, it's hoped that the border water bait shops and resorts will still realize as much angler traffic.
Anderson said anglers will be able to take advantage of weekends with nice weather, and bait shops and resorts won't be dependent on that one big weekend. He noted that some of the recent openers have not seen many anglers due to poor weather. In 2013 and again in 2018, ice covered the lake on the border opener.
The pubic may comment by linking to the DNR rulemaking webpage located at bit.ly/MN-SD-BorderWatersInput, or comments can be sent to Al Stevens, 500 Lafayette Rd, St. Paul, MN 55155, or emailed to him at email@example.com.